Tuesday, March 30, 2010

And now for something completely different:

I am sooooo close to completing a huge bridal necklace; it's been consuming much of my free time and my fledgling blog has been neglected. :( Not to worry, I thought of my lovely readership and wanted to entertain you in some way, even if it means borrowing from humor I could only dream in my dreams of touching with a twelve-foot pole.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Who likes food?

Due to inclement weather, today's post is going to be a recipe! (You see, with this cold I'm trying to shake offa me and this overcast and wet sky hanging above me, I'm feeling a bit Eeyore-ish. Plus I already had this recipe post written up and it's just easier to use it now than to try and write anything with redeeming value while in my current state.)

Chilaquiles Casserole
(courtesy of Eating Well LINK)
*note* This is how *I* make it, which slightly varies from the recipe in the link.

• 1-2 TB olive oil, enough to coat bottom of your pan
• 1 medium onion, diced
• 1 medium zucchini, chopped
• 2 14-ounce cans black beans, rinsed
• 1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
• 1 14-ounce can of corn (or use frozen corn, 1-1/2 cups)
• 1 teaspoon ground cumin
• 1 teaspoon paprika
• ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
• ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
• Optional: Vegeta Seasoning mix (found in the international section at the grocery store), 1 tablespoon
• 15 corn tortillas
• 1 19-ounce can mild red or green enchilada sauce
• 1-1/2 to 2 cups sharp Cheddar cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly coat a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish with cooking spray.

2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in zucchini, add salt, cook 2 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes, corn, cumin, paprika, garlic powder and Vegeta and cook, stirring occasionally. Let veggies cook for about 10 minutes to let the flavors meld together.

3. Lay down your tortillas in the casserole dish like you’re making a lasagna; I put down four whole ones and then cut one in half and lay the halves at the end. Pour/spoon half of your veggie mixture onto the tortillas. Drizzle about 1/3 of your enchilada sauce over the veggies and sprinkle with cheese. Add another layer of tortillas and add the rest of the veggies, another 1/3 of the sauce, and cheese. Layer with remaining 5 tortillas, pour remaining sauce on the top and sprinkle remaining cheese. Cover with foil.

4. Bake the casserole for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking until the casserole is bubbling around the edges and the cheese is melted, about 10 minutes more.

I love this dish and it’s a great make-ahead meal. Bon app├ętit!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Introducing: Me

I’ve stood in front of a mirror practicing different techniques of greeting someone I was due to meet for the first time. The old, “Hi there!” with a head tilt and a ‘howdy neighbor’ wave always seemed a bit corny but “’Sup?” struck me as too nonchalant and ghetto so, after about six or seven tries I always gave up, plus talking to myself in the mirror for too long just gets a little creepy. 'Just go with the flow and hope you don't make too big a fool of yourself' remains my motto. This is why you’re reading this instead of “Welcome to my blog!” so consider yourself “welcomed.” :)

Firstly, I’m a mommy to a little guy I adore and a wife to a big guy I adore. From now on I shall refer to them on here as Little Guy and Big Guy. Secondly, I’m getting to do something I *never ever thought I would do*: have my own business. Wow, this kinda sounds like a Mary Kay ad (hey, I used to sell that stuff! I just buy it now, much easier…) but no, this is no pitch. I am a jewelry designer and I sell on Etsy. Alright, let me back up and give you some more history about myself:

I graduated from BYU-I with a BS in Psychology and minored in Marriage and Family Studies, a major and minor I picked in my freshman year and, with the goal of graduating on time in mind, pretty much stuck to it. After meeting The Hubs (aka Big Guy) and getting married in my junior year, I took a class called Sensation and Perception. It was the hardest class I had yet it got me the most excited; that class didn’t even scratch the surface of how our brains interpret our external stimuli into our reality as we experience it. During this course, I realized I didn’t want to get into counseling; I wanted to do NEUROLOGICAL RESEARCH! How cool would it be to play with brains and wires and conduct experiments??!? *cue mad scientist cackle*

But, remember how I said I was a junior when I took this class and I was newly married? Well I decided to just keep my class schedule the way it was so I could graduate on time, especially since Big Guy was about to graduate and there was instant employment for him whereas I would need a Master’s degree to really be qualified for a position in my field. Oh wells. I WILL get my Master’s someday and it WILL be something cool … and something that has to do with brains.

He got a job and within the first month of moving, we got pregnant. I was still finishing 21 credits of classes online so between that and knowing a baby was on the way, we decided I might as well focus on my classes and not worry about finding a job since I wanted to (and thankfully could) stay home with our baby. Really, I know how lucky I am that I can stay at home with my kids and I try to never take it for granted. But anyway, what does this have to do with Etsy?

At some point during my last trimester I was in an anxious, antsy sort of state. You know, I wanted the baby to come already, I wanted to see my feet again, and with my classes mostly out of the way I was REALLY needing something to do. So I read a lot of Terry Pratchett novels and that passed the time but I needed to … create. I made jewelry when I was younger, like 11 or something, with a girls’ youth group and I really liked it. Well the idea to make jewelry as an outlet came to me and I got really, really excited about it but then decided it would cost too much money to justify making jewelry just for the sake of making jewelry (selling it was not something I considered at the time), so I put it out my mind. Fast forward to February-March of 2009, the idea hit me again and this time it  grabbed me by the ears, looked me in the eyes and told me that I HAD to try making and selling jewelry! I protested that I didn’t even know what I would make let alone how to go about selling it (remember I said I used to sell MK? I’m not a natural salesperson). Then the idea cuffed me upside my head. I’d better figure it out, it said, or forget ever getting a peaceful night’s sleep without wondering what could have been. Naturally, I treasure sleep as one of life’s unsung luxuries and I decided to heed this irrational and slightly scary idea and go for it. I found Etsy and I began creating jewelry, starting with fun beaded watch bands. My attention eventually focused on wire wrapping and that’s mostly what I do right now (I have ambitions to do metalsmithing in the near future).

Besides my Etsy Endeavor, as I call it, I like do a lot of neat stuff. It’s all so neat-o that it’s going to need a new blog post because this one is long enough as it is (to everyone who has actually gotten this far, congratulations). SO until next time!